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Appl Immunohistochem Mol Morphol. 2006 Jun;14(2):193-7.

Immunohistochemical analysis of embryonal sarcoma of the liver.

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  • 1Department of Pathology, Ohio State University Medical Center, Columbus, OH, USA.


Embryonal sarcoma of the liver is a rare, aggressive malignant tumor that typically occurs in children and teenagers. Microscopic features include spindle, oval, or stellate cells with poorly defined cell borders, nuclear pleomorphism and multinucleation, and variable immunoreactivity to cytokeratin, vimentin, and alpha-1-antitrypsin. Intracellular and extracellular PAS-positive, diastase-resistant hyaline globules are commonly present. The authors evaluated a panel of IHC stains to better define the pattern of immunoreactivity in this tumor. Embryonal sarcomas of the liver were identified from archival files and were immunostained with antibodies: cytokeratin AE1/3, hepatocyte, SMMS, myogenin, calponin, h-caldesmon, desmin, S100, vimentin, CD34, C-kit (CD117), CD10, ALK-1, PE10, Bcl2, p53, and Ki-67. Six cases were identified. Patient age ranged from 6 to 24 years. Tumors ranged from 10 to 20 cm and contained spindled and epithelioid areas with PAS-positive, diastase-resistant globules and atypical cells with focal multinucleation. All cases showed immunoreactivity with vimentin and five showed immunoreactivity with Bcl2. Focal immunoreactivity was seen with cytokeratin AE1/3 in three cases, CD10 in four, calponin in two, desmin in one, and p53 in four. All tumors were negative with hepatocyte, myogenin, CD34, SMMS, h-caldesmon, PE10, ALK-1, and S100. No cytoplasmic staining was seen with C-kit. The proliferation index ranged from 30% to 95%. The diagnosis of embryonal sarcoma is based on typical morphologic features in a large liver tumor occurring in a young patient. The most useful IHC stains help to exclude tumors such as hepatoblastoma, hepatocellular carcinoma, embryonal rhabdomyosarcoma, and other sarcomas.

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